Glutathione (GSH), also known as y-glutamylcysteine glycine, is one of the most common low-molecular thiol compounds. It is found both in prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms.
A reduced form of glutathione is the most important element of the antioxidant system which is responsible for the protection of cells against harmful effects of reactive oxygen species. Apart from its direct antioxidant effect, glutathione has also the ability to regenerate other antioxidants, such as vitamin C and E. It is also involved in the repair of protein molecules, lipids and nucleic acids whose damage was caused by peroxidation reactions. It participates in xenobiotic metabolism.
Maintaining healthy intracellular glutathione levels is extremely important for creating an optimum environment for our immune function and detoxification and antioxidant processes. What is more, glutathione has a major role in the circulatory and digestive system (helps fight intestinal inflammation and ulcers).
Glutathione supplementation has therefore a wide range of uses. Formulas with this ingredient are recommended especially to individuals who want to promote general health. They can also bring great benefits for athletes in whom intense physical activity leads to overproduction of free radicals.